UT Austin
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General Info


CONTENTS

CHAPTER 1
The University

CHAPTER 2
Admission

CHAPTER 3
Registration, Fees, and Deposits

CHAPTER 4
Academic Policies and Procedures

CHAPTER 5
Student Affairs

CHAPTER 6
Libraries and Other Academic Resources

CHAPTER 7
Ex-Students' Association

APPENDIXES

STATISTICAL
SUMMARIES




     APPENDIXES CONTENTS


Policy on Sexual Misconduct and Sexual Harassment


I. POLICY STATEMENT

It is the policy of the University of Texas at Austin to provide an educational and working environment for its students, faculty, and staff that is free from sexual misconduct and sexual harassment. The University encourages students, staff, and faculty to report sexual misconduct or sexual harassment by members of the University community, visitors to the campus, or those who have business, professional, or educational relationships with the University.

II. SCOPE

This policy applies to the conduct of all students and employees of the University of Texas at Austin.

III. DEFINITIONS

  1. SEXUAL MISCONDUCT

    Sexual misconduct is behavior of a sexual nature that is unprofessional and/or inappropriate for the workplace or classroom but that does not meet the definition of sexual harassment. The purpose of prohibiting sexual misconduct is to discourage and, if necessary, take disciplinary action for inappropriate or unprofessional activity of a sexual nature in the workplace or classroom, even if that conduct appears to be welcomed and is not so serious or pervasive that it meets the definition of sexual harassment.

    Examples of behavior that could constitute sexual misconduct include but are not limited to

    1. Repeatedly engaging in sexually oriented conversations, comments, or horseplay, including the use of language or the telling of jokes or anecdotes of a sexual nature in the workplace, office, or classroom, even if such conduct is not objected to by those present; and
    2. Gratuitous use of sexually oriented materials not related to the subject matter of a class, course, or meeting, even if not objected to by those present.

  2. SEXUAL HARASSMENT

    Sexual harassment is a form of illegal gender discrimination that involves the imposition of an unwanted condition or requirement on the continued employment or education of the victim. Two forms of harassment are recognized:

    1. Quid pro quo harassment involves unwelcome sexual advances and/or requests for sexual favors, whether implicit or explicit, that are made a condition of continued employment or education. Only persons with the power to confer or withhold an employment or educational benefit, such as persons responsible for the direct supervision of employees or students, can engage in quid pro quo harassment.

    2. Hostile environment harassment usually involves persistent, pervasive unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that

      1. Has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual's performance as an employee or student; or

      2. Creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive employment or educational environment.

        Examples of conduct that might create a hostile environment, depending on the severity and frequency, include but are not limited to

        • Intentional touching of intimate body areas;
        • Explicit or implicit propositions to engage in sexual activity;
        • Gratuitous comments of a sexual nature such as explicit statements, questions, jokes, or anecdotes; remarks of a sexual nature about a person's clothing or body;
        • Remarks about sexual activities or speculation about sexual experiences;
        • Exposure to sexually suggestive visual displays such as photographs, graffitti, posters, calendars, or other materials;
        • Deliberate physical interference with or restriction of an individual's movements;
        • Persistent, unwanted sexual/romantic attention;
        • Subtle or overt pressure for sexual favors; and
        • Deliberate, repeated gender-based humiliation or intimidation.

      3. When deciding whether conduct unreasonably interferes with an individual's performance or creates an intimidating or hostile environment, the University will consider the totality of circumstances, including the context of the conduct, its severity, frequency, and whether it was physically threatening and humiliating, or a mere offensive utterance. A single, isolated incident of such conduct, if sufficiently severe, can constitute environmental harassment under this policy.

IV. GENERAL PROCEDURES

  1. REPORTING

    Any member of the University community who believes that he or she has been subjected to sexual misconduct or sexual harassment is encouraged to report it to any University official or supervisor. No employee or student is ever required to report or make a complaint of sexual misconduct or sexual harassment to the person who is the subject of the complaint.

    1. Consulting and reporting locations: Students

      Any student who believes that he or she may have been subjected to sexual misconduct or sexual harassment by a member of the faculty or staff of the University, a fellow student, or a visitor to the University campus is encouraged to consult with or report such conduct immediately to any of the following persons or offices:

      • Sherri Sanders, Associate Dean of Students, Student Services Building 4.104, (512) 471-9700 or (512) 471-1201, e-mail sl.sanders@mail.utexas.edu;
      • Any dean, associate or assistant dean, or department chair;
      • Susan Bradshaw, Associate Vice President for Institutional Relations and Legal Affairs, Main Building 206, (512) 475-7715, e-mail sbradshaw@mail.utexas.edu; or
      • Linda Millstone, Director, Equal Employment Opportunity Office, Flawn Academic Center 206, (512) 471-1849, e-mail lmillstone@mail.utexas.edu.

        To insure that situations that may involve sexual misconduct or sexual harassment are handled appropriately, deans or depaRtment chairs will immediately notify Sherri Sanders, Associate Dean of Students, of a request for advice or a report and arrange for a meeting between the student and Dr. Sanders. Faculty members or academic advisers who receive reports of sexual misconduct or sexual harassment are encouraged to inform appropriate officials of such reports.

        Complaints or allegations of student-to-student sexual harassment or misconduct will be referred to the Student Judicial Services area of the Dean of Students Office for handling pursuant to the applicable section of the University's Student Code of Conduct.

        For more information concerning options and procedures for resolving student complaints of sexual misconduct or sexual harassment, see http://www.utexas.edu/depts/dos/sh/.

    2. Consulting and reporting locations: Employees

      1. Any person employed by the University who believes that he or she has been subjected to sexual misconduct or sexual harassment is encouraged to consult with or report such conduct to

        • Linda Millstone, Director of the University's Equal Employment Opportunity Office, Flawn Academic Center 206, (512) 471-1849; or
        • The head of the employee's administrative unit, or the appropriate vice president, the provost, or another University official if the unit head is the subject of the complaint.

      2. In order to insure that situations that may involve sexual misconduct or sexual harassment are handled appropriately, administrative heads or University officials who receive a request for advice or a report of sexual misconduct or sexual harassment will immediately notify Ms. Millstone of the report so that a meeting with the complainant can be arranged.

        For more information concerning options and procedures for resolving employee complaints of sexual misconduct or sexual harassment, see http://www.utexas.edu/admin/ohr/eeo/.

  2. Complaint options

    1. Consultation

      Employees or students may choose to confer or consult with Ms. Millstone or Dr. Sanders in order to simply discuss their situations and obtain information about sexual misconduct and sexual harassment and the options available for bringing complaints. Such a consultation will also allow them to become aware of other relevant University services that are available to them. If the employee or student does not wish to make a complaint, no action will be taken by the University unless it decides that the described conduct is severe, or part of a pattern of persistent misconduct that requires investigation. A record will be kept of the consultation and, to the extent legally possible, that record will remain confidential.

    2. Informal complaint

      1. Definition and initiation
        An informal complaint is one that will not result in any disciplinary action being imposed on the alleged offender. It is an appropriate form of resolution when the conduct complained of is not serious or severe; and/or when the student or employee making the complaint wishes to resolve it without a formal investigation. An informal complaint is initiated when an employee or student informs the director of the Equal Employment Opportunity Office or the associate dean of students of the offensive conduct, and of his or her desire to handle the matter informally.

      2. Complaint resolution

        1. Methods
          Methods for resolving informal complaints can include, but are not limited to, some or all of the following:

          • Mediation of the complaint between the complainant and the offender;
          • Modification of the situation in which the offending conduct occurred;
          • A documented meeting between a University official and an alleged offender that, at a minimum, involves a discussion of the University's sexual misconduct and sexual harassment policy requirements.

        2. Time
          The University shall act promptly on informal complaints. They shall be resolved as soon as practicable or within forty-five days of their initiation, unless unusual circumstances require more time.

      3. Documentation and confidentiality
        The University shall document the informal complaint and its resolution. Such documentation shall be retained by the director of the Equal Employment Opportunity Office or by the Dean of Students Office as appropriate. The University, to the extent allowed by law, will maintain the confidentiality of the complaint. It will also attempt to maintain the confidentiality of the complainant during the informal resolution process. However, the identity of the complainant may become apparent, or disclosure necessary, as a result of the actions taken to resolve the complaint.

    3. Formal complaints

      1. Definition and initiation
        A formal complaint is one that involves an official investigation and the possibility of the imposition of disciplinary action on the offender. A formal complaint is appropriate when the behavior complained of is serious and/or is a part of a pattern of such behavior. A formal complaint is initiated when the complainant submits a written and signed statement describing the offensive conduct in detail to any head of an administrative unit, University official, the Dean of Students Office, or the director of the Equal Employment Opportunity Office. The University may also initiate an official investigation of a complaint in situations it deems require formal resolution.

      2. Formal complaint resolution

        1. Investigation
          The resolution of formal complaints involves an official investigation made under the direction of the appropriate University official, who will determine whether the University's policy has been violated and what disciplinary action, if any, is appropriate. Complaints brought by employees about supervisors or other employees will be investigated by the director of the Equal Employment Opportunity Office. Complaints brought by students about teachers or academic advisers will be investigated under the direction of the Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost. Complaints by students about other students will be investigated under the direction of the Dean of Students.

          The alleged offender is given a copy of the complaint as a part of the investigation and is provided with an opportunity to respond to it within ten working days, unless unusual circumstances require more time. Both the complainant and the accused will be interviewed as a part of the official investigation, as will any witnesses or persons who have information related to the complaint.

        2. Possible resolutions of formal complaints include but are not limited to

          • A finding that the University's policy concerning sexual misconduct and sexual harassment was not violated and dismissal of the charge; and
          • A finding that the University's sexual misconduct and sexual harassment policy has been violated, leading to imposition of a disciplinary action as determined by the appropriate University official. Disciplinary actions for employees can include oral reprimands, written reprimands, suspension without pay, and termination. For students, disciplinary actions can include admonitions, probation, bars on issuance of transcripts, grades, or diplomas, bars on readmission, or any of the penalties set out in Sec. 11-502 of the Institutional Rules on Student Services and Activities.

        3. Time
          The University shall act promptly to investigate complaints. A written report of the investigation shall be provided to the appropriate executive officers within sixty days, unless unusual circumstances require more time. The decision of the appropriate executive officers concerning whether there is a violation of University policy, and, if so, the appropriate disciplinary action, shall be made within thirty days of the receipt of the investigation report.

      3. Disciplinary actions
        Disciplinary actions may be appealed or grieved by the employee or student who is disciplined. Such appeals or grievances shall be brought pursuant to existing University policies and procedures. Complainants may be required to appear and testify at hearings that may be a part of any such appeal or grievance procedure.

      4. Confidentiality
        The University, to the greatest extent possible, will attempt to maintain the confidentiality of the complainant. However, the investigation of a formal complaint will necessarily involve the disclosure of the identity of the complainant and accused to those who are involved in the investigation. Documents related to the investigation and its outcome will be kept confidential to the extent permitted by law.

V. Retaliation Prohibited

Retaliation against a student or employee for bringing a complaint of sexual misconduct or sexual harassment is prohibited. Any employee or student who does so is in violation of this policy and may be subject to disciplinary action.

VI. Effect of Bringing a Complaint

The filing of a sexual misconduct, sexual harassment, or retaliation complaint will not stop or delay any evaluation or disciplinary action related to a complaining employee or student who is not performing up to acceptable standards or who has violated University rules or policies.

VII. Consensual Relationships

In addition to complying with the above policy dealing with sexual harassment and sexual misconduct, students and faculty members should conduct themselves in an appropriate manner and should avoid compromising situations involving any romantic or sexual relationship between a faculty member and a student who is enrolled in a course taught by the faculty member or who is otherwise under the supervision of the faculty member. This policy is not intended, in any way, to discourage the interaction of faculty and students where harassment or a conflict of interest is not a factor; however, the policy is intended to clarify that it is inappropriate for a faculty member to form romantic or sexual relationships with students working under the faculty member's direct supervision.



Top of File      Appendix D
      

Contents


General Information catalog

Contents
Chapter 1 - The University
Chapter 2 - Admission
Chapter 3 - Registration, Fees, and Deposits
Chapter 4 - Academic Policies and Procedures
Chapter 5 - Student Affairs
Chapter 6 - Libraries and Other Academic Resources
Chapter 7 - Ex-Students' Association
Appendixes
Statistical Summaries


Related information

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Office of the Registrar
University of Texas at Austin

27 July 2000. Registrar's Web Team
Comments to rgcat@utxdp.dp.utexas.edu